Sunday, July 2, 2017

Kuranosuke Koibuchi and the Frame of Beauty

The story of Kuragehime (2014) takes a look into the apartment complex of five unmarried women who can be classified as otaku, unsociable adults with obsessive interests who are typically shunned by society.  These women, including the main heroine Tsukimi, are all designed to be conventionally unattractive.  They are considered, and even consider themselves, to be an entirely different species from the upper-class beauties known as the Stylish.

However, one day, Tsukimi has a fateful encounter with one of the Stylish-- a stunning "woman" who, on a whim, comes to her aid in a social situation.  It isn't until after the stranger stays the night in her room and removes his flowing wig that it is revealed to be Kuranosuke Koibuchi, the son of a powerful politician who just happens to be very interested in fashion and cross-dressing.  Under the alias "Kurako," he continues using his feminine persona to help himself as well as his new friends.  Through his genderbending, Kuranosuke stands as a strong testament to his own ideal about the transformative power of fashion to influence how a person is perceived.